This paper seeks to establish the development of information systems for the enterprise and their future direction. Information systems are a field that keeps on changing with time and invention of better working tools and, therefore; most enterprises have to follow the change and create a way to accommodate these changes. In this paper, we are going to look at these developments and the direction they are likely to take in the future. This is because any development in the information system will call for more innovations in the elements of information systems. In addition, the paper will consider the needs of the enterprise of many sizes and its future opportunities. Enterprises come in different categories depending on the size and operations. Enterprises in the current world are facing considerable challenges from diverse changes making the traditional enterprise information system be out of date. The timely reaction to market changes has turned out to be the competitive advantage.
Information system refers to the grouping of software, hardware, infrastructure and trained personnel organised to make possible the control, planning, decision-making, and coordination in an organisation. On the other hand, an enterprise refers to a company or a business. The development of information systems is a procedure that involves several steps and the paper will outline these steps. In an enterprise, there exist several relationships between information systems and changes in the enterprise, both within and across firms, which affect the development of information systems. The development in information systems gains exceptional attention as it influences the organisational changes. When analysing the development of information systems we will consider the software, hardware, infrastructure, and trained personnel in line with the enterprise’s plan, control, coordination, and decision-making.
The development of information systems varies with the nature of enterprise and its needs. Different enterprises have varied needs and the change in information system will be in line with these needs. It is, therefore, indispensable for anyone planning to develop an information system of any company or business to consider the nature of enterprise they are dealing with and its needs. There are different types of enterprises including a sole proprietorship, partnership, companies, and corporations. The above types of enterprises have some differences in their ownership, management, liability, amount of capital and their legality. For instance, the sole proprietorship enterprise is whereby the ownership is by one person and so is the management while, for partnership, the management and ownership of the enterprise is by two or more persons.
On the other hand, the categorisation of enterprises can be in the form of how the enterprise operates. Examples include Independent enterprises, Competitive enterprises, Supplementary enterprises, and Complementary enterprises. Independent enterprises have no direct bearing on each other an increase in degree of one another neither help nor hinders the level of the other. Competitive enterprises are those, which contend for the available resources while supplementary enterprises are the ones, which can supplement each other. These differences in the different categories of enterprises result in them having different needs, which in turn will call for varied information systems (Kirikova, 2002, p.40). The needs of a corporation will not be the same as those of the partnership business and, therefore; they will have different information systems.
We define the development of information system as the change procedure taken with respect to object systems in a set of surroundings by a development group using an organized collection of techniques and tools known as a method to attain or maintain some objectives. The process of development of information system includes improvement of both computerized and manual parts of an object system. In the definition of Information System, we see that it includes both computer- supported parts and manual. It is, therefore, essential that the development of information system involve a technique and a method. By a technique, we refer to the set of rules and steps, which characterize how a symbolization of an information system is derived and handled. This is usually by the use of some theoretical structure and related notations. By employing, the technique-procedure system developers observe, define and correspond on certain features of the present or wished object system. Definition and symbolization of these contexts is by the theoretical structure of the technique and the notation respectively.
The tool in use while applying the technique process means a computer- based application, which sustains the use of a modelling technique. Here, there is the abstraction of an object system into replicas, checking that the replicas are dependable, switching results from one form of replica and representation to another, and giving specifications for re-examination. The major examples of modelling techniques are activity models and data flow diagrams. In the case of data flow diagram, it identifies and names the objects and relationships, which it finds necessary in developing an information system. For other techniques, they will involve other sets of relationships and objects in development of information system. Modelling techniques have a representation and a notation. For example, in a data flow diagram the notation for a procedure is circular and for a data flow a concrete line with an arrowhead (Prabhu, Kumara, and Kamath, 2003, p 67).
On the other hand, a method is an organized and predefined collection rules and techniques that state what order, by whom, and in what means the techniques are applied to attain or sustain some objectives. This definition includes both the process and product contexts and, therefore, insists on the procedure rather than the representation. The next section we look at the needs of the enterprise of many sizes. In the earlier discussion, the paper analyzed the different classifications of enterprises and, therefore, these enterprises will have varied needs when it comes to system development.
We now focus on some of the common needs of the enterprise. For all enterprises, there will be a need for monitoring changes, which involves tracking, changes in businesses, people and industries. In an enterprise, there is the need to know about mergers, emerging risks, people moves, and opportunities and the need to build relationships with new prospects, key customers and business partners. There is the need to link with up with the right people, outlook for new business in any economy, collect intelligence, and measure performance. In addition to the above needs, there is also need to ensure compliance and discover new opportunities from fast-breaking trades. All these needs vary from one enterprise to the other depending on the size and nature of enterprise and in turn determine the development of information systems (Vasilecas, 2005, p 45).
In the development of information system, the system developers consider a few steps irrespective of the enterprise. The initial step is of the mission development where missions give the overarching framework for the whole enterprise. The accomplishment of missions by enterprises is by functions and later on refined into database domains. The establishment of all business information systems and database within this enterprise framework makes it work. The second step is the database design, which is built within the enterprise architecture. The basis of database designs is on enterprise-wide data factors, data replicas of concepts, DMBS independent models, and lastly DBMS dependant models. This will ensure total metadata re-use, semantic harmonization, and data interoperability.
The following step is prototype generation. Prototypes are usually set in the enterprise architecture and through the generation of these prototypes maximum efforts can be spent on getting a whole set of requirements. Following this step is the specification evolution stage, which is critical as it allows the full set of requirements to be teased out. By using the information system generators, the capability to progress from iteration to the other is straightforward, and one can achieve this in hours. Another major step in the development of information system is the request for proposals. This refers to a formal specification of what the enterprise desires to implement. The document should have all the prototype and metadata described in the earlier stages (Giachetti, 2010, p.12). The document should show the evolution, methods of development, evaluation methods, and monitoring methods of the development of information systems.
In the development of information, system, there is the proposal evaluation. This is the process of determining how well, when, costs the development of an information system will require. This stage produces an understanding in regards to the implementation procedure, costs, schedules, reviews, and deliverables. The final stages involve the awarding of contracts, contractor management and conformance testing. So what is the later direction of the development of information systems?
The future direction of the development of information systems in dependant on the progress of enterprises, their needs, and innovations in regards to elements of information systems. Different enterprises keep changing in terms of their needs as the enterprises grow and these will in turn affect the information system they use in running their businesses. For instance, a sole trader will change to a company and will, therefore, have to change the information system it was using. This means that the future direction of development of information systems will grow to accommodate these changes and growing needs of the enterprises. With the growing industries, the enterprises have many opportunities of expanding so accommodate the growing demand from the market. In addition, the technology world is rapidly growing, and it is necessary that the enterprises change to contain this change. The software, hardware and other elements of information system will change with time and the enterprise will need to update these changes in order to ensure efficiency of their services and products. The advancement of these elements of information systems will in turn lead to further development of information systems (Filipe and Cordeiro, 2011, p.63).
In the above discussion, we have information on the definition of development of information system in relation to enterprises. The paper looked at the tools and methods applicable in the development of system development, which includes methods and techniques. To understand the development of information systems the paper gave more information on the types of enterprises and their needs. It is evident from the discussion that the needs of an enterprise vary from one enterprise to the other, which makes them need varied information systems. We also analysed the steps system developers undertake in the development of information systems.
Information system as a field is a wide field, which keeps on growing and changing with time. The more the innovations the more the field of information systems keeps on changing. This makes the enterprises change their information systems with time to meet their growing needs and demands. For example, when a partnership business enterprise increases its number of key customers it will need to acquire new and better elements of information systems to contain the change. Each day researchers are coming up with better elements of information system that will suit the current environment that enterprises operate in and grow.